Written by: Robert Venditti
Pencils by: Billy Tan
Colors by: Alex Sinclair
Published by: DC Comics
After being clubbed over the head this year with crossover event after crossover event with the Green Lantern books DC decided…it’s time for another event. This issue of GL kicks off “Lights Off” in which the villain previously introduced in the New Guardians, Relic, makes his way to Oa. Relic is from another dimension where the ‘lightsmiths’ of his time lead to its destruction, so he’s on a mission to make sure it doesn’t happen again. That means snuffing out anyone who has weaponized the light, all the lantern corps. Having previously dispatched the Blue Lantern Corp (hopefully this is not a permanent move, I love those guys.), he now turns his attention to the Greens.
One thing I do love about the Green Lantern Universe is the way they create these villains so huge that it takes the combined might of all the corps to win. You’d think this device would be old by now, but not to me. Relic seems like a dude so bad assed that this event could turn out to be a lot of fun. I will say that some of his methods did seem a little bit like cheating because of the ease of his present victory, it will be interesting to see how the Lanterns come up with a strategy to beat him.
There were some fun moments in this issue, Hal wanting to question Kyle about the amount of time he has been spending with Carol, something I pointed out in a New Guardians review I had done a while back. There was some funny banter like when Hal was issuing orders and John quipped that he actually sounded like the leader of the Green Lantern Corp for a second. Unfortunately there were a few missteps along the way. Venditti’s writing for John Stewart in particular was a bit off; it was almost like Venditti didn’t really understand John and his dialogue. John for the most part is a straight laced, no nonsense Marine and at some points John’s dialogue just didn’t match up with the way he usually written. Some things are explained away a bit too easily as well, like Kilowog conveniently calling for all Lanterns to be grounded just
before their rings went offline. I think that moment would have had a greater impact had it cost some Lanterns their lives. Maybe it’s just that I miss Johns so much that anyone taking his place just won’t do, but maybe Venditti just needs some time.
The art in this book was so-so for me. I didn’t like the way some of the characters were drawn, in particular John Stewart. The pencils just seemed muddled in some panels. I prefer a more sharp and detailed art style, but here we don’t get a lot of that. In some panels we get some good art, than in others we get really bad facial expressions and little detail. Tan just doesn’t bring it the way Mahnke did and the book suffers for it.
I really want to like this new creative team since Green Lantern is my favorite title of them all, but I’m just not feeling it here. I think over time once they start to understand the characters and the universe a bit better we could see some great stuff coming out, but for right now they are still trying to develop their game. Being that we just had the Third Army and the First Lantern, I’m not so sure that starting up yet another crossover event is a good way for Venditti and Tan to cut their teeth on GL.
3 out of 5 nerds